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New Pharmaceutical Centre will be established in Kuopio

Ministry of Social Affairs and Health
19.1.2009 14.10
Press release -

A new Pharmaceutical Centre will start operations in Kuopio on 1 September 2009. In the first phase operations pertaining to pharmaceutical research and development are started in Kuopio. Minister of Social Affairs and Health Liisa Hyssälä announced the decision on Monday 19 January. Already in December, the coordination group for decentralisation was unanimous in its recommendation to establish the Pharmaceutical Centre in Kuopio.

The position of the personnel will be secured in the decentralisation through a five-year transitional period. All tasks will be relocated by 31 August 2014, by which time the centre will be in full operation in Kuopio. The rapporteur for regional decentralisation proposed that the transitional period for the new agency will be extended at the very least to the end of 2011.

Preparations for initiating operations in Kuopio will be started immediately. The relocation of personnel and tasks will be carried out in stages in order to safeguard the core activities under all circumstances. The willingness of each individual employee to relocate to Kuopio will be surveyed.

Special attention will be paid to securing the continuity of operations even during the decentralisation process. Pharmaceutical safety will be ensured under all circumstances. As the new Pharmaceutical Centre is established, the Ministry will also reinforce pharmaceutical expertise by increasing the number of personnel in the pharmaceuticals field already this year.

The new Pharmaceutical Centre will gather up the currently disintegrated pharmaceuticals field and reinforce competence. The strong environment of competence in the area favours Kuopio as the location for the new centre. The proposal of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health to the coordination group for regional decentralisation was based on regional effects, operational effects, and availability of staff.

The Ministry together with the National Agency for Medicines will continue the process of completing the existing risk management plan necessitated by the establishment of the new centre and the new Director-General at the National Agency for Medicines.

Ms Marja-Liisa Partanen, Deputy Director-General at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, will be appointed as the acting Director-General of the National Agency for Medicines as of 16 February 2009. The responsibility for preparing for the new Pharmaceutical Centre was transferred by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health to Deputy Director-General Partanen on 19 January. The process of completing the risk management plan will be continued under her lead.

The representation of personnel organisations and the staff as well as the opportunities of the staff to influence the relocation process will be sufficiently secured at all levels. The reorganisation of pharmaceutical supply will comply with the Government resolution on arranging the position of personnel in situations of reorganisation and the related application guidelines. The personnel policy measures required by the Government resolution will be initiated immediately in accordance with the procedures defined in the Government resolution and the related application guidelines.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health will continue the preparations for establishing the Pharmaceutical Centre and the reorganisation of pharmaceutical supply. The project steering group will be leading the decentralisation process, defining the strategy, organisation, and management system for the centre, and determining the tasks to be relocated. The steering group will ensure that the staff has the necessary information about the project. The project group will guide and coordinate the reform under the steering group and answers for, inter alia, the preparations for the strategy, organisation, and management system for the new centre. Projektin tukena toimii konsultti.

For further information contact:

Terttu Savolainen, State Secretary, tel. +358 9 160 74099, +358 050 5839912  

Tiina Sahlberg-Kelly, Secretary to Minister Hyssälä, tel. +358 9 160 73753

Päivi Sillanaukee, Director-General, tel. +359 9 160 73313, +358 40 532 8249

Marja-Liisa Partanen, Deputy Director-General, tel.Ž+358 9 160 73804, +358 50 559 9169

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